DALLAS — A Dallas school district is narrowing its focus as it looks to rename some schools bearing the names of Confederate figures.
The Dallas Independent School District initially planned to research more than 20 historical figures to see if their ties to the Confederacy or slavery should prompt a school name change. That list included names like Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson, The Dallas Morning News reported .
District leaders now say they’re focusing only on schools named after Confederate generals. A vote is expected later this month on four elementary schools named after Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, Albert Sidney Johnston and William Cabell.
Chief of School Leadership Stephanie Elizalde said the district wants to quickly take action on names with a more significant negative meaning.
“If it was named for the single purpose of promoting white supremacy, then it should be changed,” Elizalde said.
The district is trying to respond to violence that erupted at a white supremacist rally last month in Charlottesville, Virginia, said Board President Dan Micciche.
The board will collaborate with staff and parent groups to come up with new names for schools under review. Micciche said he hopes the name change will be completed by the end of the year.
Changing the name of the four schools could cost between $25,000 and $100,000 per school, depending on the type of marquee at the facility, Elizalde said.
Information from: The Dallas Morning News, http://www.dallasnews.com